ABOUT

welcome

you’re already part of the family

We believe everyone can find their place at First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake (FCC). We believe that the church body is most dynamic when every individual is valued and given the opportunity to share their spiritual gifts and unique perspectives to build and lead the community of faith. While we celebrate one God and our calling to follow the way of Jesus Christ, we develop and express that relationship in differing ways.

At FCC, we want you to know that “Whoever you are and wherever you are on life’s journey… YOU are welcome here.”

what to expect

We recognize that many people who visit a church for the first time do so with a bit of fear and trembling, but we hope that you feel warmly welcomed and comfortable at First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake. First Congregational Church is a spiritual home to people from all walks and stations of life, believers and questioners, people from a range of backgrounds and faith perspectives, who come together to worship God, become more like Jesus and serve God’s creation.

We have highlighted some key information in this section, but the best way to get to know First Congregational is to talk with the people here. Don’t hesitate to strike up a conversation with one of our pastors, ushers, greeters or the people in your pew, and learn more about our life of worship, fellowship and service together.

First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake offers two worship services each week at 9 am and 11 am.

We meet in the sanctuary with familiar gospel hymns highlighting the congregational singing, accompanied by organ and special music provided by our Adult Vestry Choir. Communion is offered to all people on the first Sunday of each month. Full multi-room, Godly Play Sunday School (PreK-3rd grade) and Connect (upper elementary/middle school) meet downstairs.

Nursery care (3 years old and under) and Sunday School is available at both services.

Services usually last 60 minutes.

First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake is located at 461 Pierson Street; Crystal Lake, IL 60014.

We are one block south of Route 14 (Northwest Highway) behind the Crystal Lake water tower.

As you enter the church, a friendly usher will greet you and give you a bulletin to guide you through the service. All of our services feature reading, preaching, prayer and music. At times, you will be invited to stand, sing, pray, greet your neighbor, be in silence or read responsively.

At all of our services we maintain the ancient Christian practice of receiving an offering to support the church’s ministries. We welcome your gifts and encourage everyone to live a life marked by generosity.

Children and families of all sorts are welcome and cherished at First Congregational Church.

Infants through 3 years old are welcome in our nursery. Care is available uninterrupted through both services on Sunday morning.

Children infant through 6th grade can be signed in to Sunday School downstairs before each service.

All nursery care providers and Sunday school teachers have been through a background check.

Some people come dressed in their Sunday best. Others dress more casually. Either way, we believe that God cares more about the state of our hearts than the state of our attire and encourage you to dress the way that feels most appropriate to you.

Between worship services, Fellowship Hall (outside the left doors in the sanctuary as you look at the front) is open for a time of fellowship and refreshment. Please visit our welcome center (in Fellowship Hall), and join us for a snacks, coffee or lemonade, and conversation!

First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake, strives to make our church accessible to all, while increasing the awareness of our congregation to those with special needs. Persons with special needs deserve our respect and dignity:
“Buddies” (trained adult volunteers) are confidentially provided for children who need assistance to participate in FCC programs. This has included children with hearing loss, Down’s syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, ADHD, cognitive impairment, sensory issues and temper control issues.
Accessible bathrooms are available on each floor and a wheelchair accessible companion bathroom is located on the main floor. Directional signs for special needs bathrooms and parking are located on the church grounds and throughout the building.
A loop system (direct sound feed to hearing aids so equipped) has been installed in the sanctuary. Hearing assisted devices and large print bulletins are also available.
Outside Accessibility Team (OAT) volunteers are stationed at the chapel entrance before services to assist anyone needing a hand.
The chapel entrance door is equipped with automatic door openers.
Extra space has been made in the sanctuary seating to accommodate wheelchairs, walkers and strollers. Railings are installed on the stairs leading up to the chancel and a ramp is provided in back of the chancel for wheelchair access. Extra wheelchairs are available by the chapel entrance.

what we believe

  • We the friends and members of First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake believe in the extravagant love of God for all people.
  • We believe God’s grace and forgiveness were embodied in Jesus Christ. As members of the body of Christ we seek to be a living example of Christ’s welcome, acceptance, and love.
  • We do not presume to tell anyone what they must believe, for ours is a community of free inquiry and searching.
  • We promise to share with you our experience of faith and ask that you share yourself with us.
  • In this way we shall learn from one another, grow stronger, and more often be faithful to God as servants to all people.
  • We profess our faith in God, our Divine Creator; our willingness to be guided by the Holy Spirit; and our love for Jesus Christ, the son of God, in whom we find our hope.
  • We promise, as members of this church body to contribute to its support, growth, and activities in ways fitting to its needs and to our own capabilities.
  • We will seek to build our Christian community by sharing in worship, caring relationships, service, and study together.
  • We do this for the glory of God, for the good of all humanity, and for our own growth in Christian grace, faith, and fellowship.
  • We believe in God, the Eternal Spirit, who is made known to us in Jesus, our brother, and to whose deeds we testify:
  • God calls the worlds into being, creates humankind in the divine image, and sets before us the ways of life and death.
  • God seeks in Holy love to save all people from aimlessness and sin.
  • God judges humanity and nations by that will of righteousness declared through prophets and apostles.
  • In Jesus Christ, the man of Nazareth, our crucified and risen Lord, God has come to us and shared our common lot, conquering sin and death and reconciling the whole creation to its Creator.
  • God bestows upon us the Holy Spirit, creating and renewing the Church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant faithful people of all ages, tongues, and races.
  • God calls us into the Church to accept the cost and joy of discipleship, to be servants in the service of the whole human family, to proclaim the gospel of all the world and resist the powers of evil, to share in Christ’s baptism and eat at Christ’s table, and to join Christ in the passion and victory.
  • God promises to all who trust in the Gospel forgiveness of sins and fullness of grace, courage in the struggle for justice and peace, the presence of the Holy Spirit in trial and rejoicing, and eternal life in that kingdom which has no end.
  • Blessing and honor, glory and power be unto God. Amen.

open and affirming to all:

The ever journeying people of First Congregational Church, UCC of Crystal Lake, Illinois, are proud to be a church with open minds, open hearts, and open doors. We invite all people to join us in our faith journey toward greater love, understanding and mutual respect.

We declare ourselves to be an Open and Affirming congregation, welcoming into the full life and ministry of the church persons of every race, culture, gender, sexual orientation, gender identification, age, physical ability, and economic status.

We commit to model a community of faith and spirit that offers openness and understanding to promote justice, healing and wholeness of life for all people.

We believe that the church body is most dynamic when every individual is valued and given the opportunity to share his or her spiritual gifts and unique perspectives to build our community of faith.

united church of christ:

FCC is a church in the United Church of Christ (UCC) celebrating over 175 years of ministry in Crystal Lake. The UCC is a distinct and diverse community of Christians that come together as one church to join faith and action. With over 5,000 churches and nearly one million members across the U.S., the UCC serves God in the co-creation of a just and sustainable world. The UCC is a church of firsts, a church of extravagant welcome, and a church where “…they may all be one” (John 17:21).

stephen ministry supported:

Stephen Ministers are congregation members trained to offer high-quality, one-to-one Christian care to people going through tough times. We all experience challenges in life — times when we could benefit from the support of a caring Christian friend. The loss of a loved one, a hospitalization, a divorce or separation, loneliness, unemployment, serious illness, depression, issues related to aging. Any one of these events can send us into a tail-spin. Stephen Ministers are ready to provide the emotional and spiritual care you need when faced with a crisis or difficulty. For more information or if you are in need of a Stephen Minister’s support, please contact Pastor Emily (emily@fcc-cl.org).